With the Canyon Endurance:ON AL, the direct-to-consumer brand has released its first ever E-road bike. Canyon’s engineers have combined features from the existing Endurace platform with the latest FAZUA motor technology. Will this E-road bike become the perfect companion for long-distance rides? Find out here.
Canyon set themselves a clear goal for their first E-road bike: the Endurace:ON AL should enable riders to do more of what they want, where they want. Canyon see three main target groups for their brand new bike: riders who want a steadier ride with less peak effort, beginners who want to keep up with their faster riding buddies and road bike fans who want that little bit of help to be able to ride more demanding terrain. With this in mind, despite entering the E-road bike market comparatively late, Canyon want to democratise E-performance by offering great value for money. The Endurance:ON was developed in parallel to the Canyon Roadlite:ON (read more here). While selected features such as mudguard mounts and of course the FAZUA Evation system have been carried over, the geometry of the aluminium frame, as the name might suggest, takes significant influence from Canyon’s bestseller, the Endurace (read more here). Canyon’s primary aim is to offer a road bike that just so happens to have a tailwind built in. While the company doesn’t anticipate an immediate boom in E-powered bikes on the road, it sees a lot of long term potential in this sector. According to Canyon, the Endurace:ON is intended to open the door for a whole selection of E-road bikes that will drive forward the electrification of their portfolio. However, initially that will just be in the form of the AL 7, which we looked at in detail for this review.
The Canyon Endurace:ON AL 7 in detail
Canyon have chosen to equip the Endurace:ON with Shimano’s GRX RX600 gravel groupset. The 1×11 setup with a 48 t chainring and 11–42 t cassette might mean larger gear jumps than you would find on a 2×11 or 2×12 groupset, but combined with the FAZUA Evation system, offers a sufficient range of gears. The hydraulic GRX RX600 disc brakes stop on 160 mm rotors and rely on the traction of the 700 x 32C Schwalbe E-One tires to deliver their braking power. As well as mounting points for mudguards, the frame provides clearances for up to 35 mm tires. However, we could happily imagine slightly wider tires fitting if you need to squeeze them in. The Alexrims Iridium RXD5C wheelset has an inner rim width of 19 mm, though unfortunately it doesn’t come fitted with tubeless tape. The frame uses 12x100mm and 12x142mm thru-axles at the front and rear respectively. Alongside Canyon’s aluminium H17 bars and V15 stem, their SP41 carbon seatpost is also part of the spec. Canyon’s new E-road bike build costs € 2,999 and our test bike in size M weighs 15.44 kg.
Your muscles are augmented by the power of the FAZUA motor aboard the Endurace:ON AL. In contrast to the FAZUA bikes we tested in our E-road bike group test (read more here), the drive unit has been updated with FAZUA’s new Black Pepper firmware. This offers significant performance improvements to both the handling and riding characteristics of the system. If you want to find more, our colleagues at E-MOUNTAINBIKE Magazine have taken a closer look at the updates (everything about FAZUA Black Pepper). Luckily, if you already own a FAZUA-equipped bike, there’s good news too – the update is backwards compatible and can be used with existing drives. If at this point, you don’t know exactly what we’re talking about, or you just want to find out more about ebike motors, you can find our motor group test here.
The FAZUA Evation drive is fed by a 250 Wh battery and delivers a maximum power of 250 W, with three different assistance modes: Breeze, River and Rocket. The maximum assistance speed is 25 km/h in Europe. While the gearbox is permanently built into the bottom bracket, the motor and battery, the so-called Drivepack, can be removed from the bike. If you want to ride without support now and then, that lets you strip 2.9 kg from your bike and with the optional Downtube Cover, you can use the resulting ample storage space to stow snacks, spare tubes or a jacket. Only the approximately 1.3 kg heavy gearbox stays fixed inside the frame. The Q-factor measures 168 mm, making it close to road bike spacing and allowing the bike to pedal naturally. While you’ll have to plan in 3.5 hours to charge an empty battery, it’s impossible to make a blanket statement about the range you’ll be able to achieve. It’s not just dependent on the size of the tank, as consumption, efficiency and power of your motor, as well as around 20 other factors, including riding style, rider weight and the distance ridden above the 25 km/h assistance limit all play a role in determining your ultimate range.
Replace the Drivepack with the Downtube Cover and you have space for all your essentials, and technically, unlimited range!
Groupset Shimano GRX RX600, 1 x 11, 48 t chainring
Cassette Shimano GRX 11–42 t
Brakes Shimano GRX RX600 160/160 mm
Wheelset Alexrims Iridium RXD5C
Motor Fazua Evation Black Pepper Performance, 250 W
Battery 250 Wh
Assistance modes Breeze (100 W max.), River (210 W max.), Rocket (250 W max.)
Tires Schwalbe E-One Evo, 700 x 32C
Seatpost Canyon SP41 VCLS, 20 mm offset
Bars Canyon H17, 420 mm
Stem Canyon V15, 90 mm
Weight 15.44 kg in size M
Price € 2,999
Availability available now
As you might have noticed, Canyon have focussed on speccing a mix of robust, functional and pragmatically chosen components. If you’re looking for bling, you’ll do so in vain, but the attractive price will be of interest to a lot of potential customers and, just like the Endurace:ON does for Canyon’s portfolio, opens a lot of doors.
Geometry of Canyon’s first E-road bike
In contrast to many other bike models in the Canyon portfolio, the Endurace:ON AL is available in only four sizes. Canyon claim that makes it suitable for a range of riders between 1.70 m and 1.96 m. Due to the space required in the down tube for the FAZUA motor and the constraints required to achieve the desired geometry of the bike, smaller frame sizes just aren’t feasible. Indeed, as it stands, the geometry of the Endurace:ON can emulate the Endurace only to a limited degree. Our test riders measuring between 1.79 and 1.86 m were very happy aboard the size M test bike, though they could likely have ridden an L as well. If in doubt, we would recommend going for the smaller frame size. The position on our bike was a little stretched but not aggressive, though some of Canyon’s sportier genes have undoubtedly been inherited. Unfortunately, smaller riders will have to practice a little patience before Canyon’s road bike electrification progresses further.
|Seat tube||480 mm||520 mm||540 mm||565 mm|
|Top tube||556 mm||567 mm||580 mm||600 mm|
|Head tube||138 mm||159 mm||182 mm||208 mm|
|Chainstays||425 mm||425 mm||425 mm||435 mm|
|Wheelbase||1,007 mm||1,014 mm||1,040 mm||1,045 mm|
|Reach||386 mm||391 mm||398 mm||410 mm|
|Stack||573 mm||595 mm||617 mm||643 mm|
Challenges for direct-to-consumer E-road bikes
Canyon use their existing experience for distribution – after all the Endurace:ON is by no means the first ebike the brand has produced. For servicing and possible warranty claims, Canyon offer a triad of options. Their internal service team has recently been expanded and moved into its own building. Customers will be able to make direct contact and if required, send their bike back by courier. Secondly, selected service partners can be located through the Bike Repair network (read more here). Finally, FAZUA tech support is available for any questions or problems that relate to the motor.
But how can you get your hands on your new E-road bike? The Canyon Endurace:ON is available to order immediately online, with an initial focus on German-speaking and Benelux countries. Distribution to international locations will follow shortly, where country specific rules and regulations regarding ebikes will of course be conformed to.
Canyon Endurace:ON AL 7 on test
During our test, the Canyon scored highly with its incredibly stable ride. The chainstays, which have grown by 10 mm compared to the Endurace, measure 425 mm and result in a good-natured ride with great straight line stability. The classic 73° head angle offers handling that is agile and very predictable through the corners. While you will have to provide a lot of steering input through tight bends or at slow speeds, the bike shines in fast open corners and on the straights. That feeling of security is underlined by the powerful and easily modulated Shimano GRX RC600 brakes. With that extra dose of trust, the Canyon takes all the fright out of descents and its generous tire clearances also mean its happy to take a few gravel shortcuts. You won’t just cut a fine figure while riding and the high-quality matte finish means you can take pride of place during your coffee stop as well. While some of the more prominent welds are neatly finished, those around the dropouts and bottom bracket are a little less elegant. Here, aesthetics obviously had to give in to functionality and economy.
Comfort is a result of the damping of the Schwalbe tires, the compliance of the Alexrims wheelset and the vibration damping of the aluminium frame and carbon seatpost. Overall, the Canyon feels planted on the road with a harmonious and balanced level of comfort, making it well suited to long distances. Tubeless compatible parts could improve this further and would be nice to see, though all that’s missing are tubeless tape and valves. The aluminium frame isn’t a compromise and is a sensible choice of material here. Nothing rattles, nothing creaks and everything fits together seamlessly, which is what we like to see. It’s only the large engagement angle of both the freehub and FAZUA gearbox that disturb the peace with their comparatively loud clacking and a metallic clunk when you get back on the pedals after coasting.
The sounds emanating from the motor vary depending on the support mode and power from barely perceptible (low load) to a very obvious, high-pitched hum (full load). At lower outputs on the flats and in Breeze mode, the sound of the motor will get lost in the wind and rolling noise of your tires. Here, the transition at the 25 km/h assistance limit is hardly noticeable. However, the motor characteristics do vary depending on the mode selected and your own customised setting of the FAZUA drive. With the latest update, you are master of the motor and can tune the support characteristics according to your preferences. The transition at the 25 km/h limit is largely influenced by the chosen “Support Factor” of the FAZUA system. Perhaps counterintuitively, a small FAZUA Support Factor means little rider input and lots of motor input, which becomes noticeable at the 25 km/h limit. Just take a look at the numbers: at 400 W, with 150 W coming from the rider and 250 W from the motor, more than half of that disappears at the 25 km/h assistance limit. That makes the transition a lot more obvious. It’s different with a high FAZUA Support Factor. Lots of rider input, less motor input and a more natural feel. Again, if you’re putting out 300 W and the motor is delivering 100 W, then only a quarter of the total 400 W disappears at the assistance limit, making the transition that much smoother. Regardless of the setting you choose, the motor never powers down abruptly and modulates its power smoothly before reaching the speed limit. The range of assistance modes means you can choose between lots of power or just a light tailwind. Whether you’re after a sweat-free tour or a sporty post-work sprint, anything is possible.
€ 2,999? Sold! Amazing value for money
In the factory setting, the motor modes are set up sensibly with clearly differentiated support. Earlier generations of the FAZUA motor just had a bar mounted remote, but the control unit has now moved from the bars to the down tube, meaning some usability has been sacrificed in the pursuit of a tidier look. That said, the battery level indicator and ergonomics of the remote are both excellent and with a little practice, it is easy to operate blind. The FAZUA drive now also handles a wider range of cadences much better. The optimal cadence for the motor used to be between 75–90 rpm but it is now happy all the way up to 110 rpm, making it well suited to a road bike. To save energy, the battery goes into sleep mode after several hours of inactivity. It then has to be removed from the bike, just as it does for charging, in order to reactivate it. That’s by no means a problem but it is an extra step that could get tiresome with time. The 1×11 drivetrain worked very well with the FAZUA drive. Gear steps are of course larger than with a traditional 2x drivetrain but the gear range worked well during our testing in the vineyards around Stuttgart and in the foothills of the Black Forest.
Canyon Endurace:ON AL 7 summary
Canyon have served an ace with the Endurace:ON AL 7. The good natured and predictable handling generates a lot of trust and in combination with the balanced comfort, results in a coherent package that will be suited to all sporty commuters, weekend travellers or leisure riders who are looking for an attractive, E-assisted bike at an excellent price. The update to the FAZUA system also convinced us across the board. If you’re looking for an E-allrounder and can overlook the crude welds, you’ll get a fantastic option here!
- coherent overall concept
- well-balanced comfort
- secure and stable ride
- unbeatable value for money
- not all components are tubeless ready
- some welds are a little crude
- large engagement angle of freehub and gearbox
Words & Photos: Benjamin Topf